Johnson Controls has announced the expansion of its interiors plant in East London, South Africa. 

"Our plant in East London has been growing since it opened in 2000," said Ingo Fleischer, vice president & general manager, global Daimler Business Unit, Interiors for Johnson Controls Automotive Electronics & Interiors. "We were previously just producing interior and seating components on a just-in-time basis. Now we are deepening the value chain, and adding more production capabilities."

The East London plant currently supplies interior components, including headliners and instrument panels for the Mercedes-Benz C-Class. It will create 200 new jobs and will also supply door panels in the future. The new building has 13,000 m2 of space for three assembly lines.

"We would like to thank the Department of Trade and Industry and the South African Government, for supporting us with our latest investment in the East London Industrial Development Zone," said Marco vom Wege, vice president & general manager Johnson Controls Automotive South Africa (Pty) Ltd.

Johnson Comtrols established its operations in South Africa in 1994 with approximately 65 employees. Today, Johnson Controls employs more than 1,700 people in its five plants in South Africa. The company's plants in Port Elizabeth and Sandton produce metal structures and mechanisms for automotive seats. The plants in Uitenhage and Pretoria supply complete car seats on a just-in-time basis to various major automakers.

"The South African automotive industry has shown continuous growth since we established our presence here. The country has become an important location within the global automotive manufacturing network," said Fleischer.

"Our success can be greatly attributed to our employees at the plant," added vom Wege. "We are recruiting team members with technical educations to support us in driving the future automotive business of the company."